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February 29, 2012


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Benita, you are a genius. How do you think up solutions like that??


I love problem solving and love to reuse stuff I already have but it's also out of necessity. Since I don't have a car I can't just jump in and drive to a lumberyard to pick stuff up so I try to be inventive so I don't have to get on my bike too often :).

jenn ski

I'm loving that wallpaper!


This is SO clever Benita. The shelves look amazing, as does the wallpaper.
You are my Guru. I just voted at AT.


It's very you :)


Wow, that's neat! Very inventive. I knew the insides of the tabletops sometimes are like that but I would not have figured to use it like that.


I love that your recycling is so perfect, not at all 'make do'!
Congratulations on the nominations x


Oh you shelving wizard you!


You are beyond unbelievable! This is soooo ingenious I am at a loss for words. All I can say is that I am so glad you got the new house and with it a lot of work that you can share with us! Perfect! :-)


This shelving looks really great!


Oh Benita your talents really amaze me....Where we are dreaming and thinking about something you 'just do it'. Bravo!!

Debbie from Chicago

Clever, very clever!


Är det ett hallgolv som ligger och väntar där innanför dörren? Blir det alltså trägolv istället för tapet? Eller ska det vara till källaren nu när du bor därnere? Spännande!


God grant me the savvy and tools to be this clever...


Ja, det är det faktiskt. Hade en dryg fp över från resten av huset så det kändes som en bra idé efter lite eftertanke. Hoppas hinna lägga golvet i helgen :)


Excellent solution - that was an IKEA tabletop, right? The shelves now look just like the IKEA Lack floating shelves, except you have them custom sized to your space!

Vicki K

I love how you used what you had - and improved it!! I'm curious about the table sawed in half for the nightstands...seems like they would be candidates for reinvention!


This is why I enjoy your blog - there's always a use for something, somewhere. I hope you realise that your DIY is saving the planet earth :)


I don't have a space for them right now but I've kept them in case I think of somewhere later.


Yes, it's Amon from IKEA.


i have linked to you.



super brilliant, they look great! my father would also pull together amazing solutions with the materials recovered as he renovated our house, it is completely inspiring. ecological, absolutely, but also fascinating. x


So many others have said it too.. but really you are so brilliant! I absolutely love, love, your blog and all the inspiration you share with the world. Thank you!


You are so talented, Benita!! I love all of your work, your home is amazing!


What's the strength of the shelves going to be like? The table was supported under the full "sandwich" of its construction, but you are putting the weight on just the uppermost layer, which is only held to the lower by the cardboard, which would have a lot of "crush" strength, but I don't know what kind of "sheer" strength for the new forces.

I don't think I'd be putting my best china figurines on there...


I'm with everyone in awe, here. I had two Ikea tables and thought with sort of shame for them being hollow, but look you! There was nothing of it!

I also have a sort of question, for you Benita and for everyone out there. You may not be familiar with these materials and I'd be just wasting your time, or maybe you are... Well, here I go. I wonder if I could hang a bookshelf system from a wall.

What's the problem: the wall is made of red hollow bricks and I fear I'll destroy my home or even worse, to put my family in danger of it falling on our heads.

(I guess they're like these ones http://www.dreamstime.com/royalty-free-stock-images-red-hollow-bricks-image18956699 but the apartment is really old so they might be slightly different. What I know is that this wall literally bleeds when you drill a hole, and my husband tried to hang some hooks on the other side of it and they sort of fell off - not really promising, right?).

Why that wall: it's a perfect nook. Design wise, it's perfect location, light but no direct sunlight, size and all. It measures 3 x 3 mts and I'd love to cover all 3 mts wide of it.

Why that system: I inherited and I loved the person who owned first (I know, I'm a sentimental). I REALLY want to use them (and a little fanciful, apparently).

What is it like: It consists 4 rails of heavy iron (?) of 174 cm of length and one hole every 29 cm (that'd be 7 holes each rail, 28 holes in all), and 6 loops where the wooden boards that are the shelves are hung. It's not too different to this more modern version (http://fotosdedecoracion.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/11/EstanterasparaOficinas6.jpg).
It'd be 18 mts of shelving, but I'm really not planning on having them all set, because it's really unwise to have all that many shelves only 27 cm high (I do own taller books, you know?).

So my question, for you Benita or anyone out there would be... have you ever hung something heavy and large from a hollow red blocks? How did it go?

Thank you everyone!!!


You are such a genius. :)

Noga from Israel

Benita, you are getting better and better!!!!! And this is not a surprise at all...
Have a lovely day!


I also wouldn't put my best China in the bathroom :). But kidding aside the shelves are surprisingly sturdy. There's still some wood on the sides which holds it together and the cardboard inside is glued hard to the top and bottom. For this bathroom it's perfect since the weight of toilet paper, towels and toiletries isn't much but the shelves themselves are super lightweight too so there isn't really any strain on the screws or the masonite. I wouldn't use this method for a 24 volume encyclopedia storage though...


I'm afraid I haven't tried hanging anything heavy off those types of bricks but I'm sure your local DIY store has a solution for you. There are special screws for most materials, some with anchors at the back so something like that might be what you need. Best of luck!


Thank you! I think hollow bricks are not widely used in Europe and Northamerica (my search gave results mostly from India), so I didn't think you had tried... but I wasn't losing much by asking, was I?

I tend not to trust local hardware stores because they seem more interested in selling than anything else... but I think I will ask a vendor of similar shelving systems.

Thanks again for your time, Benita. I profoundly dislike Apartment Therapy popularity contests, but I'll vote for you in those two categories and keep my fingers crossed for you!


Thank you! I haven't had a chance to read it but I promise I will!


Hi Benita,

Loved the makeover. Especially the wall paper. I had added your blog to my blog list over an year back, and I am so excited when I see that a new blog post is done. I just rush over to here to see those lovely pics and things you do.

And look at those neatly folded and stacked towels! Is your home always so spic-and_span with a kid and 2 cats? I find it almost difficult to keep my home in order always. I have to be on my toes always to keep it in order and OMG and I can't thinking of keeping the whites always white. Hats off to you!



Our home is pretty tidy most of the time (Wille's room not all the time mind you :) but come the end of the work week the floors and bathroom aren't not super clean as I usually clean on Fridays after work.

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Hi,just like your blog!

Gabor Berger

Nice idea! You changed this boring space into something organic. And what a presicion!

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